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Behind the Scenes: Drawing Blood

As with any procedure, veterinary professionals take care to minimize your pet’s stress during a blood draw. Dr. Greg Pietsch says “We do the blood draws as quickly as possible to minimize stress. There are a variety of veins that we use to draw blood including the jugular vein of the neck and veins in the front and back legs. The choice of vein depends on how much blood is needed and what we think will be the most comfortable for the pet”

Blood is drawn at the annual comprehensive wellness visits for dogs. This blood is used to check for heartworm disease and several tick-borne diseases including Lyme, Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma. Usually enough blood is obtained with this sample to do any further testing as might be recommended by your veterinarian. Your veterinarian may also recommend drawing blood for senior screening bloodwork as your pet begins to get older and most sick pets will have their blood drawn to help determine a diagnosis.

Relax, don’t worry when your pet is having a blood draw; most blood draws are quick and painless. Occasionally there may be some bruising and a temporary bandage is placed over the blood draw site. An adverse reaction to simple blood collection procedures is extremely rare in our experience and far outweighed by the knowledge gained from the results.